1 Unique Spice That Beats Down Belly Fat?
By Kevin DiDonato MS, CSCS, CES
The other day, I was out with my wife enjoying sushi for lunch.
When our order arrived, we dug right in. I’m not a big sushi buff, but my wife sure is. I watched as she mixed the Wasabi and soy sauce together, topping her sushi with a small leaf of ginger.
Of course, I asked her why she did this, and she answered, “It is better this way!”
This got me thinking, why would topping something off with ginger make food that much better? So I did a little research, and was surprised to find out there are many uses for ginger, very similar to garlic.
Ginger is one of the most cultivated spices in the world. It has been used for thousands of years from the Middle East to Asia, China, and Japan. Even the Greeks and Romans used ginger for good health and strength. There are countless books and papers promoting ginger as a medicinal and spiritual herb, which once was very expensive.
Of course ginger has digestive properties, helping to soothe an upset stomach. Here are some other ways ginger was, and is still, used back to this day:
• Alleviate menstrual symptoms associated with PMS (early 20th century)
• Strength and vitality
• Way to keep foods fresh (before the invention of refrigeration)
So you see, ginger has been used in many different ways for hundreds of thousands of years. Flash forward to today: New research on ginger which blew me away! Let me explain.
Components found in ginger can help burn fat and decrease the number of fat cells produced by the body. Those same properties have both anti-inflammatory and anti-obesity fighting effects.
Ginger can stop pre-adipocytes from becoming fat cells. How?
Certain components in ginger, 6-shogaol and 6-gingerol, help inhibit TNF-α from downregulating adiponectin. This is important because the more adiponectin in the blood, the lower your body weight and fat becomes.
In fact, obese individuals have lower levels of adiponectin than their lean counterparts. Ginger helps increase the production of adiponectin by inhibiting TNF-α production.
Both properties act differently in the body though. First, 6-shogaol functions as a PPARγ agonist. I will get into PPARγ cells in a minute! The second, 6-gingerol, is the component which inhibits TNF-α, raising adiponectin levels.
Now what is a PPARγ, and why is it so valuable in the body?
PPARγ, shortened name for peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors, which are specialized cells are found all over the body with the majority being found in adipose tissue, macrophages, and the large intestine.
These cells make peripheral cells more sensitive to insulin, allowing for more glucose to move into the muscle. These specialized cells control when pre-adipocytes acquire specialized properties, making them into functioning adipocytes, or fat tissue.
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These cells prevent the production of more fat cells, make peripheral cells sensitive to insulin, and help with fatty acid and glucose breakdown.
Beside diabetes, insulin resistance, metabolic disease, and obesity, there is also a growing concern for fatty deposits found in the liver. There are two ways fat builds up in the liver, one is caused by alcoholism and the other is a buildup of fat in the blood, which gets deposited in the liver.
This is called Non Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, or NAFLD. This disease is on the rise, with more and more cases occurring every day.
NAFLD is just as dangerous and serious as alcohol-induced fatty livers. The reason: the build-up of fat leads to cirrhosis of the liver, if you do not take care of it. This means it stops the liver from doing its job, which is to filter blood and nutrients which are ingested by the body.
When cirrhosis is present, there is a buildup of fat, which creates cross bridges in the liver. These cross bridges can be reversed in NAFLD before they bind together, which results in cirrhosis. The scariest thing by far about NAFLD: There is a growing population of youth with excessive fat build up in the liver. Primary reason for it: the rise in youth obesity.
NAFLD is caused by insulin resistance, oxidative stress which leads to damage and pro-inflammatory cytokines released by fat, promoting disease and inflammation in other areas of the body.
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Ginger activates PPARγ, therefore increasing the production of adiponectin and decreasing toxic cytokines from being released by fat. This works positively in the body by raising good hormones related to energy and metabolism, and decreasing toxic cytokines.
This can prevent metabolic disorders and other obesity-related complications from happening in the body.
A once-vibrant nutrient used worldwide, ginger has tremendous health-promoting effects in the body. Acting as an aphrodisiac to aiding in digestion, ginger is used in different medicinal and spiritual ways. Certain properties naturally occurring in ginger are researched because of the positive effects with fat. These properties block specific receptors and they reduce the progression, or can even block the formation of fat from accumulating in the liver. Ginger, in combination with the other nutrients found in LeptiSense, may help you lose weight and split and burn fat cells forever.
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Sahebker, A. Potential efficacy of ginger as a natural supplement for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. World J Gastroenterol. 2011. Vol. 14(17);pp. 271-272.
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Soldo-Juresa, D. Metelko, Z. PPARγ- A New Concept of Treatment? Diabetologia Croatica. 2009. Vol. 38(2);pp. 23-29